SEGA AGES Puyo Puyo (Nintendo Switch) Review

By Shane Jury 06.11.2019

Review for SEGA AGES Puyo Puyo on Nintendo Switch

Though many long-time western gamers can trace the first notable appearance of Puyo Puyo to Sonic's nemesis and his Mean Bean Machine, the series actually began as a spinoff to another; Mado Monogatari, a dungeon crawler RPG from, now-defunct, developer Compile. That developer lives on through spiritual successor Compile Heart, but the Puyo Puyo series itself is now firmly in the grasp of SEGA, and has seen numerous new editions and titles over the years, recently cumulating in a crossover with almighty Puzzler Supreme, Tetris. The ongoing SEGA Ages range of games brings back classic titles, in a new shell of customisable and flexible experiences, and now it is the turn of the Arcade version of Puyo Puyo. Is this retro highlight worthy of a Switch Catalogue?

Upon booting this up, and being treated to the snazzy SEGA Ages intro, the primary mode of note is Arcade Mode, which offers single or two-player modes of play. For the solo puzzler there are three difficulties on offer, each with set numbers of opponents, and a cute interaction between characters before each match, plus an optional Helper function that aids newcomers to the series. Two players can face off against one another as well. Head to Head battles are generally considered the most popular form of play among the fandom, so this is basically the main meat of Puyo Puyo that unfortunately offers little else beyond Sega Ages enhancements to this concept.

Although there isn't a tutorial mode in here, aside from the manual on the Starting Menu, the rules of Puyo Puyo are exactly what all great Puzzle games need to be; simple to grasp and play, hard to master. Like Tetris, each player has their own vertical grid, and two joined coloured blobs fall at a time. The primary task is to make a vertical and/or horizontal grouping of four or more blobs to make them vanish, and free up space in the grid. Where strategy comes into play is sending blank blobs to the opponent's side of the field, and making their pile reach the top of their grid screen, resulting in an automatic player victory. Through guiding and rotating each coloured blob duo, and utilising combo chains of blob linking and vanishing, more lines of blanks can be sent over.

Screenshot for SEGA AGES Puyo Puyo on Nintendo Switch

With the SEGA Ages wrapper firmly encasing Puyo Puyo, comes a host of new features and quality of life additions to it all. Online Play is perhaps the biggest new addition, letting budding Puyo Puyo masters take their expertise across the world with Room creation or joining others for matches, or simply looking for a quick random battle. High Score Rankings play into this too, with scores now accumulating around the globe. The presentation of the game receives a host of customisation options as well, beyond the colourful and charming look it retains from the Arcade release. Both the Japanese Text original, as well as the Translated International versions can be selected, as well as overall game difficulty for that extra challenge, or more accessible experience. Save and Load states are given for even quicker pick-up-and-play options. Full control customisation and display preferences are allowed, with scanline and fullscreen picks for that truly nostalgic feel, a selection of background wallpaper and even a full Music Player and Replays option.

It's difficult to argue against Puyo Puyo's low asking price and high level of accessibility. The only really notable point of contention being the low amount of base content in the actual game itself, and the numerous other Puyo Puyo-franchise releases on the eShop that offer so much more for a higher price, like Puyo Puyo Champions or Puyo Puyo Tetris.. The low asking price does help mitigate this however, and helps ensure a solid slice of history for all Puzzler fans.

Screenshot for SEGA AGES Puyo Puyo on Nintendo Switch

Cubed3 Rating

7/10
Rated 7 out of 10

Very Good - Bronze Award

Rated 7 out of 10

The original Puyo Puyo Arcade release arrive intact with plenty of Ages feature boosts, and plays as solidly now as it ever has, with online play, save states, and worldwide leaderboards aplenty. The base Head to Head mode remains as addictive as ever, but lacks compelling content outside of that structure, and those looking for more feature-rich Puyo Puyo goodness may wish to consider other entries in the series on the eShop.

Developer

M2

Publisher

SEGA

Genre

Puzzle

Players

1

C3 Score

Rated $score out of 10  7/10

Reader Score

Rated $score out of 10  0 (0 Votes)

European release date Out now   North America release date Out now   Japan release date Out now   Australian release date Out now   

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